Whether our vacation takes us to grind many kilometers on the motorway or to immerse ourselves in natural landscapes far from inhabited centers, among the accessories that will be equally useful to have on board there is undoubtedly the car refrigerator.
Even for those who travel on the main roads, full of refreshment points, having a container with some cold drinks in the car has its advantages, especially if you are traveling with the whole family and very frequent stops at the motorway stop at the end of the day. they can be expensive.
Also in this sector, as usual, there are a real universe of proposals and more types of accessories, from the simplest to the complex ones and with more functions.
Car refrigerator, types and characteristics
- Box or thermal bag
- Electric fridge
- Electric fridge-heater
Box or thermal bag
Also called “passive refrigerator” because it does not have a refrigeration system but only helps to keep the temperature, it is the simplest type, it is suitable for short journeys or if for some reason it is not possible to use an on-board power socket.
Obviously, the bottles must already be cold and perhaps accompanied by the classic Ice Packs , plastic containers filled with water to be frozen in the freezer, which take up some space but keep it fresh for longer.
Be careful, because it is not true that one is as good as the other. In addition to the capacity, construction and materials also count, which have made progress in ensuring increasingly effective insulation, so we check the requirements declared by the manufacturer. such as the category of thermal insulation . Spending a few euros more can guarantee us a much better result, considering that they cost very little.
This connects to the 12V socket and is equipped with coils and internal fan can lower the temperature by 15-20 ° compared to the external one and is useful when making long trips.
However, consider that if you have to put away bottles that are not already fresh along the way, it will take a few hours to bring them to the appropriate temperature. The more sophisticated ones have the refrigeration system on the bottom and not attached to the lid, in this way they keep the temperature better even when they are opened.
Not all cars are equipped with a power socket in the trunk, for this reason the fridges have rather long cables that can be passed between the seat and the backrest, between the split backrests or even under the seat if there is space (be careful not to pinch them) so as to reach the rear or even the front socket if necessary, without causing too much discomfort.
In addition to choosing it well, let’s remember to do everything possible to help our fridge work in the best way, remembering a few rules
- If possible, keep it in the trunk and not in the passenger compartment, where it can be hit by direct sun.
- Let’s not keep it open unnecessarily , let’s take the bottle and close it immediately, the cold as the heat dissipates quickly and restoring it takes time
- If there is space, we also keep the plastic cups inside, if the temperature is not very low they will help not to heat the drink too quickly.
- We always try to load bottles that are already cold , even if the fridge is electric it will be more effective
- Plastic bottles are more practical, thin and less bulky than their capacity and less dangerous in case of breakage and therefore they are preferred, but consider that glass ones and aluminum cans keep the temperature better.
- Pay attention to when we stop: many models have electrical systems that are deactivated by turning off the ignition and extracting the key, so it is necessary to calculate that from that moment the fridge will be without power and can only count on its isolation, but in any case it will suffice less than half ‘time of rest to nullify 2 hours of refrigeration on the go.
- If, on the other hand, the socket remains active even with the engine off, remember to unplug the connector from the socket or you risk discharging the battery. Otherwise, if the stop is very short and someone stays in the car, it is better to leave the engine running
- Some models also have a transformer to connect them to the household power outlet, for others it is available as an accessory and it is advisable to purchase it. It allows you to use the box as a minibar and not steal space in the fridge at home, but above all it allows you to pre-cool it before a trip to load it in the car already at temperature.